Hindsight is an amazing thing.
Piggybacking off an idea from our sister site Hoops Rumors, PHR looks back at the 2005 NHL Draft and how different it would look if general managers knew now what they didn’t know then.
The 2005 NHL Draft was unique in the fact that every team had a chance to select first due to the lockout that wiped out the entire 2004-05 season. To make sure each team had an opportunity, the NHL brass assigned teams one to three ping pong balls for the draft–determined by previous performance–with the worst teams earning three ping pong balls. As history would have it, the Pittsburgh Penguins would select first and went onto draft Sidney Crosby, who would become the cornerstone of the franchise. Two Stanley Cups since then, many would agree that the correct choice was made. From there, it gets interesting.
Looking back, the 2005 NHL draft boasted some big names between the pipes. Carey Price, Ben Bishop, Jonathan Quick, and Tuukka Rask were just a few. There were also some late round steals. The Blackhawks struck gold taking Niklas Hjalmarsson in the fourth round while the Predators took Patric Hornqvist with the final pick in the draft. The Penguins also benefitted from that pick as well–especially this past season.
The redrafting of the entire 2005 draft will be based upon votes from readers. Below is a list of just over 35 players who went onto have impactful careers since then. If you don’t see a player you feel should be on there, let us know in the comments section. As each pick comes up, it will be the votes of the readers who reshape the draft selections. Throughout the next few weeks, every team will be represented and will “pick” a new player in their slot. We will begin with Pittsburgh, though it seems obvious who will be selected, because it keeps the re-draft concept consistent and complete.
With the first pick in the 2005 draft, who should the Pittsburgh Penguins select?